To celebrate our new look, we thought it would be fun to re-introduce ourselves to new and existing readers and highlight our diverse backgrounds and what drives us to work with watches. Over the next year there will be various guest authors contributing to the Magazine but the die-hard trio you will be spending time with are...
Travelling the world for 17 years with Her Majesty’s Foreign Service, followed by 10 years in the professional small arms industry (most of that in the Gulf), rounded off by a few years as a firearms instructor to VVIPs and CT units. It’s been an exciting career so far, but through it all there has always been a passion for watch collecting. I’ll never forget buying my first Rolex; do any of us? It was an Air-King 14000 and still the only one I have bought new from an AD. I went with my best friend who later became my best man. In the same month he subsequently bought a new Breitling Colt from the same dealer, so gripped by the process was he.
A hundred years later I still have the same excitement as the 21 year old me when buying a new watch however, I feel I have gone through the Swiss Giant tunnel and came out the other end finding new fascination in smaller brands and less well-known models. I am loving my new Marloe Coniston and am currently embracing a blue NTH Näcken which has really grown on me. Apart from writing for this great Magazine, that’s where I get my watch-kicks now, discovering new boutique international brands, so many of whom are producing stunning equipment.
Just to caveat, I cannot be wholly dismissive of the Swiss heavy hitters. I will never be parted from my Speedmaster Moonwatch reference 3570.50.00, calibre 1861. Yes, I understand that it's not the same model that walked on the Moon but it will always transport me to another world. How many possessions can truly claim to be able to do that? That is the magic of a great watch to me.
Where to begin? Perhaps a suitable place would be my Rolex Submariner, which I recently described as “the ultimate tool watch” to a good friend.
“For the ultimate tool” he rapidly replied – and that’s probably the most accurate biography you’ll ever read, right there.
Yet in the interests of professionalism (although it’s unlikely anyone will be fooled) it might be helpful to go into more detail. I started off as a journalist, mostly writing in the automotive sphere, on a truly eclectic variety of topics. Road-testing the ‘Callaway Corpseshifter’ hearse in America was a particular highlight.
The passion for watches has always been there too, going hand in hand with cars. I love all types of watches; to the point where I’d rather sell a kidney than my ‘Dirty Dozen’ Omega, for instance. Or my very first Swatch.
A few years ago, I started a communications agency that now takes me all over the world on various car events, where I sometimes see some pretty insane watches on wrists. The Ferrari Formula 1 drivers, for example, were recently given Richard Mille watches with a value of $1.9 million. Each.
All that time spent on the road gives me the perfect excuse to field test watches in a variety of contexts, taking them to some amazing locations. And that’s exactly what makes a watch so special: it accompanies you on every adventure, quite literally marking every moment.
Do you remember that first Swatch I mentioned? As a kid, I used to watch it glow in the dark every night. Back then and still now, it’s a source of fascination and inspiration.
At WatchGecko, I help shape the marketing and PR strategy as well as contribute to the Magazine you’re reading now. When I’m not doing that, you’ll find me driving, eating or falling into the rabbit hole that is Chrono 24 and similar watch auction sites. I’m thinking of taking up alcoholism as my next hobby: it’s probably going to be cheaper and less addictive.
As the newest and youngest member (sorry, Richard and Anthony) of our writing team at the Magazine, my journey into the watch world is only really just beginning. My collecting days are still in their infancy and my dream of owning a Rolex Submariner 16610 is still a while away from reality. But it’s all about the journey, not the destination - and if there’s something I love, it’s a journey.
My early 20’s were spent on the continent, moving to Berlin, Munich, Turin and for a short while, to Madrid. Writing was always involved in some way or another (except for a brief moment when I tried my luck at being a funeral arranger) and travelling did play a significant role in how I got into watches. During a short trip to Lugano, Switzerland, I came across the Swiss Giants for the first time, in the metal. I had my eyes set on said Rolex Submariner, with only a glass case and an unattainable price tag standing between us. Feeling a little deflated, I left Lugano that day with a budget-friendlier Swatch.
I still have that watch now, it stands as a reminder of the journey I’m taking that’ll one day have me wearing that Sub on my wrist. Until that day comes, I’m very content living in the world of micro-brand watches I’ve found myself in. As someone who loves hiking and camping in the great outdoors, I found a new passion for adventure watches which led me to my Boldr Venture, a watch I’m certain will accompany me on many adventures to come.
A message from the team
Thank you to all of the readers for gracing our work and we hope to keep you entertained and informed for many years to come.